Some common-sense ways to negotiate rural roads…
There is no country in the world that has more country or rural roads than Australia.
These roads are often where fatal and serious accidents happen and regularly it’s city-dwellers that find themselves in trouble in the unfamiliar environment.
Longer distances, higher speeds, more and larger trucks and then x-factors like livestock grazing and wildlife can all contribute to the issue.
However, there are things we can do to ensure our safety on country roads and we recommend considering these actions.
Always drive at a speed that allows you to stop on your side of the road within the distance you can see to be clear ahead.
Take nothing for granted
However familiar you may be with a stretch of rural road, always expect the unexpected as you negotiate a bend or crest.
Be ready to slow down, or stop.
Look out for animals
We have the added danger of kangaroos in Australia and that means dusk and dawn in particular require extra vigilance.
But it’s not just the animals on the coat of arms that we need to be on the lookout for.
Often, farmers let cattle graze by the side of the road, there’s ducks and even rather slow animals like turtles that can be making their way to the other side.
The most important rule though is to never swerve to avoid an animal – this is one of the most dangerous things you can do.
If overtaking, leave nothing to chance
Don’t start your manoeuvre until you know exactly how you will end it.
Use the info available to you
Signs and road paint indicate hazards ahead. Mud on the road might mean slow-moving tractors. Horse manure, especially if it’s fresh, suggests horses ahead.
Got any other safe driving tips? Let us know via [email protected] or use the comments section below.